1. Where are you from, and how long have you been in Gainesville?
Rose: Originally from Tallahassee but been in Gainesville for 14 years.
April: Gainesville! Since birth. I love this town because I love the people in it.
2. What’s your favorite Barre-themed shirt?
Rose: Eat, Pray, Slay ——because that’s me :)
April: "Hustle" because it's my motto. Reminds me to work hard and be efficient.
3. Tell us something fun about yourself / what you do when you’re not at Barre Forte?
Rose: Family time is my favorite time! Our sport-loving family enjoys watching and playing sports during our free time. I also am passionate about healthy cooking and eating so you’ll often find me teaching health education classes and in the kitchen prepping for the next great meal.
April: When I'm not at barre I love spending time with our family and friends. I feel so lucky to have two wonderful children with my husband Blue, my sisters, parents, grandparents and many in laws all in town. I love just hanging out and laughing as much as possible. I also love my jobs. I split my time between health coaching with fellow barre babe Rose at Ideal Weight Management and being an occupational therapist working with the geriatric population, with a little hair tinsel mixed in between.
4. Was your first Barre Forte class what you expected? Why or why not?
Rose: Not at all what I expected... I was expecting a slower-paced and boring class. I was pleasantly surprised with all the energy and the fast-paced class, yet still the huge focus on posture, spine work, technique and muscle control. It was fun and energetic! I was hooked.
April: No! But in such a good way. My good friend Rose had been telling me about it for about a year and half. She swore it was for me. Sadly, I kind of blew her off about it until I realized I needed to get serious about building strength. I had been running with Rose and a small group of other women for years but noticed I was never getting stronger. The therapist in me knew I need to start focusing on strength. I hadn't been interested in gyms and was about to try crossfit when Rose reminded me about the free week trial at Barre Forte. I put it in my planner, went to Sylvia's barre-lates class and then to one of Alix's classes and knew I would need a lifetime membership.
5. Why did you decide to continue with Barre Forte after your First Week Free by investing in an unlimited membership?
Rose: Barre Forte quickly became something that I looked forward to going to. The environment was so encouraging and positive and fun, and still a really challenging workout. But the REAL commitment came when my plantar fasciitis was under control and finally gone! This workout was the perfect compliment to my running training.
April: I was addicted to the vibe. After the free week, I signed up for the unlimited month and the results were amazing. I had never been to a fitness setting that was so welcoming and inclusive.
6. What makes this workout different from other exercises you have experienced?
Rose: Exercise wasn’t new to me. For my entire life, I’ve been an athlete and done many different types of workouts. But this type of workout was different for me…completely different. It was time for me to really find an exercise routine that would take care of my body instead of all the pounding and stress that I had been used to in the past. I immediately fell in love with the mind, body and spirit connection. It’s the focus on small movements, posture, breathing and extension of muscle groups that had been ignored for years. I felt muscles working that I didn’t even know I had. I’m so thankful that I’ve found something that I can do for the rest of my life.
April: The small group class setting coupled with skilled instructors leading your through a total body workout. I love how there is little to know impact on your joints with little to know weights involved yet long sets that produce big changes in your body.
7. What is your favorite Barre move so far? Why?
Rose: I’m not sure why, but I really love pretzels. It works a muscle group that is really weak for me and is a challenge every time.
April: I really like working in classic chair, it feels a little ballet-like which I love and forces me to work on my quad strength, previously my weakest area.
8. What results have you noticed after doing Barre consistently?
Rose: I feel so much better! No more aches and pains! I’m more aware of my posture throughout the day, checking on my shoulders and core work. I’m more flexible, stronger, and pain free!
April: I used to have regular SI joint pain especially during pregnancies that seem to worsen after each baby. Barre remedied that within a month. I'm so much stronger in the larger muscles like quads, glutes and hamstrings. I'm the past I really dreaded gym exercises that strengthened those groups. Now, I'm so excited to embrace that shake.
9. Have you experienced any benefits from Barre Forte that have affected you not just physically, but mentally too?
Rose: I have found that keeping Barre in my regular routine allows me to manage stress better. You can’t help but have good vibes running through your system when you’re in that environment.
April: It really helps me manage my stress during hectic weeks. I prefer the early morning classes because they set the tone for my day. Mentally, I'm more focused going into my day and love starting everyday feeling uplifted after class.
10. What is your favorite “bonus” class that you have participated in and why?
Rose: Bad Girls!!!! Love the music and the freedom to break lose at the barre with so many awesome women!
April: Bring a Boy to Barre. I couldn't stop laughing and loved how serious the men took the class. It was just such a great time! Everyone should do it! Again, I don't have all the words to describe it, but everyone must try it.
11. Is there anything you would like to share with potential new clients about your experience at Barre Forte? Any helpful tips for those who are considering trying Barre Forte, but are nervous?12) Feel free to share anything else about your Barre journey.
Rose: The staff at Barre Forte has created an environment that welcomes everyone, regardless of your fitness level. The first couple of weeks can be really tough, but remember to “Meet Your Best” and I’m sure you’ll feel the difference right away.
April: It is so hard to put into words the experience of Barre Forte because it's just that, a total experience. But there is definitely nothing to be nervous about. You get so much more out of the studio than just a good workout. You get personal attention toward perfecting your form, which translates to obvious results and the opportunity to meet your best every single class. It's truly a unique experience and something that I was missing in my life. I have loved getting to know fellow barre babes and growing with them. You just have to get your buns in the door and then the Barre Forte family will embrace you. And you don't have to wear a leotard!
12) Feel free to share anything else about your Barre journey.
Rose: My love for Barre Forte goes far beyond the workout. The feel of a place where everyone is welcoming, caring and really empowering will inspire you to love your body. You will immediately feel like family when you’re here, and that really encourages you to keep going…pulse after pulse, day after day, and month after month. Having April, an awesome co-worker and friend, as a shared Barre Star is such an honor! We love sharing everything you do with our own family at Ideal Weight Management and encourage our own clients to add Barre as part of their wellness program. Thank YOU to the Barre Forte Family! You are amazing!
April: I just believe barre is the best exercise for anyone at any age. This style of exercise protects your joints, improves your posture and makes you genuinely strong to carry you through your aging years.